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problems and that is in our interest. we must be constructive with the work that needs to be done. >> lastly, i was approached regarding by a management company. the company paid 11,000 pounds to creditors and went out of business, taking the rest of the money. isome of regulation is not working with this industry. -- at self regulation is not working with this industry. can we give funding to take appropriate actions quickly so vulnerable people are not continuing to be ripped off? >> i know the honorable lady managed to serve in the center herself and has to experience of seeing people coming in with debt problems. i think it is probably the finest organization in our country for helping people with
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debt. as for what we can do to help support the advice bureau at a difficult time, and looking at the issue of credit unions. >> he said when he was prime minister he tried to set up a judicial inquiry. my honorable friends tell me -- >> i do have every sympathy with my predecessor, particularly over the issue of the blocking of his details, if that is what happened from a newspaper. in public life, we are subject to huge amounts of open scrutiny, but not when laws are broken. the fact is we have all been too silent about that.
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that is part of the problem. you hold back from dealing with it because you want good relations with the media. what we need is honesty about this issue on a cross-party basis. i am determined the public inquiry we set up will get the job done. >> reported that international games will come at the start of august. 512 to 15 a year olds will participate. -- -- 500 12 to 15 year olds will participate. will we protect them and we send a representative to the event? >> there are not many conservative party's second
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congratulate in scotland. i wish everyone who is going to take part the best of luck. >> would the prime minister confirmed that all witnesses will be required to give evidence under oath? >> as i will explain in a minute, it is going to be one inquiry led by the judge. that judge will be the one who will eventually agree on terms to set up the way it is quick to work and be responsible for calling people under oath. >> the british house of commons is in summer recess. prime minister's questions returned in september. to watch past prime ministers questions and events surrounding the phone hacking scandal, visit our website at on tuesday, news corporation ceo rupert murdoch and his son james, chairman and chief fixative of news corporation international, are scheduled to testify before a british
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parliamentary committee. they will be asked about phone hacking by news of the world and other news corporation holdings. rebekah brooks is also scheduled to attend, but because of her arrest earlier today probability to attend is in question. -- her ability to attend is in question. presidential candidate mitt romney recently sat down for an interview in manchester, new hampshire. he talked with potential voters in the studio during a question and answer session. among the issues addressed for job creation and the economy, health care, the budget, debt ceiling negotiations, education, and the situation in afghanistan. a poll thursday shows from the leading the state republican primary among likely voters, with 29% of the vote.
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rep michele bachman is at 12%. new hampshire hosts the first presidential primary in 2012. this program runs about 25 minutes. >> the new hampshire institute of politics, with financial support from the aarp new hampshire, presents this special -- conversation with the candidates. tonight, governor mitt romney. >> good evening, and welcome to conversation with the candidate. our guest this evening is former massachusetts governor mix from a. -- mitt romney. we will get to know where he stands on the key issues. we will start with questions from me, but after the break, we will bring questions from the studio audience in a town hall format. let us get a quick look at the candidate's biography. he chose this form, rich in
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beauty and political history, as the spot to make his second run for the white house official. >> i believe in america, and i am running for president. >> met romney was going in detroit on march 12, 1947. he spent 30 months in france as a mormon missionary. romney and his wife met in elementary school. they married in 1969. they have five sons and 16 grandchildren. romney graduated from brigham young and current dual degrees from harvard law and harvard business school. he worked as a business consultant before founding an investment firm. in 1999, he came to the rescue of the salt lake city winter olympics, which was on the verge of collapse. soon afterward, he was elected governor of massachusetts. >> good to see you. >> good to be with you.
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>> you were here in the last election cycle. how is this campaign different from the last time around? >> last time, we were competing on a stage where we did not have an incumbent president. now we have president obama, who is running on his record in the first three years, and ultimately four years. i think his record is what this election will be about. do people believe he has made the economy better? do people believe america has a more stable economic foundation? or are we in a weaker position? i think the american people have concluded the president has failed us. this will be a campaign about president obama and his record. >> in 2008 around this time, you were the front runner. you must hate being called the front runner at this point. >> my experience is that early polls do not tell you a lot about what is going to happen. you have to spend your time
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getting to know people, understanding their concerns. i'll be spending a lot of time at town meetings like this. i will have a lot more before this is over, hopefully across the state, getting a chance to hear what people in new hampshire care about and sharing my message with folks here. >> do you feel you are more ready to be president this time around? >> i am probably a better candidate, because you learn from your mistakes. and i watched some people who are pretty good. john mccain ran a good campaign in our last primaries. the issue was about iraq and the surge. john mccain understood the parameters of american policy in afghanistan and iraq extraordinarily well. this time, the issue is the economy. that is in my wheel house. i spent 25 years in the business world. i understand how the economy works. i think that experience is what america is looking for.
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>> the argument of the date is the debt debate in washington. in your opinion, is there any way not to raise the debt ceiling at this point? secondly, should the president have unilateral authority to incrementally raise that as needed? >> it is appropriate for the president to recognize the decision about the debt ceiling is up to him, which is that he simply has to agree with the american people, who voted in a whole new group of congress people last fall, and a number of new senators as well, and they said we are not quick to raise taxes. we are going to reduce the deficit and reduce spending. the president simply has to do just that. say we are not going to raise taxes. we are going to reduce government spending. if the president will commit to a balanced budget, you will see republicans jump on board and there will be no issue. right now, the president wants to raise taxes. mr. president, the message was
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heard loud and clear by virtually everybody in this country. we do not want higher taxes. we want less spending. >> at this point in the game, i think republicans and democrats agree it cannot be about debt reduction. this is about raising the debt ceiling. mitch mcconnell suggested the president should be given the authority to raise the debt ceiling. do you agree? >> i want to make sure we see the cost reduction, the spending reduction the american people expect. i do not want to see a higher debt ceiling with more borrowing unless we are able to show we have dramatically reduced federal spending and have a balanced budget amendment in place so we do not keep spending more than we take in. that is what the republicans have said to the president. it is within his power to agree with that. >> you think there is still time on this? >> this is really in the
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president's hands. he has the capacity to make the decision that will conform with what the voters, the american people, so clearly have indicated they want to see done, which is government spending trunk. >> i do not want to harp on this, but this is what everyone is watching. the president said this week the chance comes august 3 for social security checks to start bouncing. but you would rather see a long- term deal that addresses the debt reduction. >> the president is going to try to frighten people and suggest all sorts of terrible things are going to happen if he does not get his way. the right course for the president is to say, "i have heard what the congress is telling me. i saw what the american people voted for in the fall. and i am willing to conform to the communication that has come from the american people."
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they want less federal spending and they want to see our deficit eliminated. he ought to cap federal spending, balance the budget. if he does that, republicans will go along and this issue will disappear. >> hypothetically speaking, this would be your approach? >> if i were in the white house, i would sit down with republicans and democrats and say, "let's cut federal spending. let's cut the amount the federal government takes of the gdp. and let's have a balanced budget amendment." republicans will sign on. a lot of democrats will sign on. in the past, the president has said he favors a balanced budget amendment. let us agree to that. the president ought to do it. if that were the case, we would solve this potential challenge we have right now. >> it is fair to say we covered the issue of the debt ceiling. after the break, we will bring our studio audience into this
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conversation. stay with us. we will be right back. welcome back to the conversation with the candidate. it is time to bring in questions from our audience. you did have plenty to choose from. i will jump in if we need a follow-up. or first question comes from stacey from merrimack. it centers on the middle class. >> fuel and health care costs are climbing out of control. many of us hold silver service positions and work hard every day for little pay increase -- people like teachers and firemen. great health care coverage is coming to an end. how will you help those of us that are hard-working middle- class tax cuts the american people are suffering, and you have put your finger on some of the ways.
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you have 20 million americans out of work or vastly underemployed. at the same time, fuel prices are going up. food prices are going up. wages are not going up, not just in government, but in the private sector. how are you going to get the economy going? how are you going to help keep the cost of living down and see wages go up? i have seven habits of what i think highly successful economies are. one is tax rates for employers that are competitive with the world, so we attract jobs here. second is to make sure we have regulation and government that is streamlined and modern. 3, trade policies that work for us, and not just the other guy -- and there are nations like china whose trade policies we about to. i do not understand that. we need to get energy independent. 6, i have great institutions. schools, training programs.
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finally, it is a government that does not spend more money than it takes in. do those seven things, and our economy will start growing again. wages will rise as employment comes up. that is the answer. >> as president, would you tap into oil reserves? >> you do not use the gas reserves other than in a time of national emergency. the right answer for energy is for us to start developing our own energy. we have natural gas in abundance. we use it not only for fuel, but for transportation. we should be drilling offshore. clean coal has great potential for us. nuclear power will come back in a safe way. and of course the renewable. but we cannot rely only on renewals because the can i get the job done. we have to develop all of our energy resources. if we do that, we will be far less dependent on the cartels.
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>> our next question comes from kelsey on the topic of social security. >> social security has worked for the past 75 years and is crucial for many seasons -- many seniors. without it, the elderly poverty rate would increase by 35%. do you support changes to social security that would increase the poverty rate for seniors? >> absolutely not. i want to make sure we preserve social security. what you hear time and time again is that social security has been rated over the years, but politicians have taken the money that has gone into social security and used it for various spending programs. medicare also makes a great difference to our seniors. i want to keep social security and medicare alive and well to protect those that are dependent upon as programs. some of my fellow republicans have proposed ideas to do that
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and have indicated no change in the programs for people that are in their late 50's and 60's. but for people in their 20's, 30's, 40's, and early 50's, we need to make sure that what we are promising them we can carry out. we do not want to mislead people and have them rely on people -- on promises that are not fulfilled. i would like to find a way to make sure those programs are sustainable on a permanent basis. i put forward some ideas in my book. no plug intended, but i have a book out laying out how i would make those problems permanently sustainable so that young people could rely on them just as the current seniors do. >> this question comes from diane from leave. she has won on the issue of health care. >> thank you, governor romney. as president, what specific steps would you take to improve the access to quality,
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affordable health care for the self insured and the uninsured? >> this is an area you have interest in. are you a health-care professional? >> i am a physician. >> it is an important question. you know that in massachusetts we wrestled with this question. we had about 7% of our population that did not have insurance. we had a number of folks who even though they could afford to buy insurance had learned that if they showed up at the hospital and said they did not have the money to pay, they could get free care. we call them free riders. some folks said we should not worry about the problems and should kick them down the field. but we are leaders, responsible for serving challenges. we put a lot in place in massachusetts. some parts of it worked. some did not. there are some things other states can learn from. there are other signs that were
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not a good idea. but the right idea is to have states craft their own programs, craft their own solutions to these issues, and let states compared to see who is doing its best. i think by doing that and then letting individuals make their own choices, you have a setting where you keep the best of the federalist system we have, where states are able to compare ideas, without having what the president did, which was to take one idea and impose it on the entire nation, take away the rights of states and individuals to make their own choices. i think that was a huge mistake. i want a free-market health care system, and i want to return to the states the authority and the responsibility for expanding coverage to their own citizens. >> that is an issue that is perhaps your achilles heel in this campaign. what is the difference between state mandates for universal
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coverage versus a federal government mandate in the federal health-care law? >> first of all, the federal mandate is unconstitutional. that is a pretty significant difference. havedly, the state's differences between them. what works in massachusetts is not necessarily going to work in mississippi and montana. we have differences. under a federalist system, which can adjust our programs. when the federal government has a one size fits all plan, you ignore those differences. i think you are going to find that in this country people say they do not want obamacare. i wish the president would have given me a call. i would have said do not impose this on the nation. american said no to obamacare in every way they possibly could. >> but you think the mandate is right for some states? >> what we did in massachusetts
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is a decision massachusetts makes. i understand the most recent poll there by a factor of three to one people support that plan. but we also have in massachusetts a curriculum for our school system, and all of our schools teach to the same curriculum. if the president were to impose that on the nation, it would be wrong, and in my view unconstitutional. it is simply wrong for the bedroom government and the president to shred the constitution by saying we are not going to believe in state authorities and state responsibility. we're going to have washington tell people how to live their lives. that is an american. it will not work. >> i would love to spend more time on this. we have a question that comes from anthony. if you are elected president, will you engage in foreign military action without a congressional declaration of war? >> the most important thing is to protect the american people.
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there are circumstances where immediacy is necessary. if you are going to engage in a war, you go to congress and received congressional support. the circumstances would determine the degree of the congressional support necessary. but obviously i would attempt to follow the constitution. as president of the united states, my first responsibility is to protect the security, the life, and the well-being of the american people. >> the president outlined his plans for afghanistan. what the you think the policy it should be? are the parts you agree with or disagree with? what do you think is the best part -- best course of action? >> the surge was good. the president does not really have a foreign policy. he responds to events as they occur. with any policy that has that characteristic, you have some successes and some failures. i think the surge was a success. i think a failure was announcing to the taliban the day you were
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going to withdraw. while they might not have watches, they do have calendars. it makes it difficult to negotiate with someone or to drive them away if they know that only have to hide for a certain time and then can come back because you are gone. i think that was a mistake. i think it was a mistake not to oversee the elections, the government elections, to make sure they were held in a way that had public confidence in a government that was not corrupt. i think there are some lessons learned. we have been there 10 years. it is time for the afghan people to take responsibility for preserving the independence which has been fought for so valiantly by our soldiers. our men and women have made extraordinary sacrifices there, and other places in the history of this great nation. we want to see the afghans pick up the responsibility for the effort that goes forward.
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the determination of when to pull our troops out should come with the input of the generals and the leaders on the ground. i think the president should listen more to them, as david cameron did, and less to a political or economic timetable. >> i know you do not agree with the method by which we got involved in libya. now that we are there, do we need to stay until gaddafi is out of power? >> we would all like to see gaddafi of power. if the president came to the american people and the congressional leaders in a humanitarian way, and no flies so, -- zone, and that mission crept into being a mission of regime change, supporting a new government in libya. our focus really ought to be on egypt, where there are 80 million people, rather than libya, where there are 6 million people. i would like to see gaddafi
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replaced. but i would like to see the president of the united states explain to the american people what he intends to do there, who is going to be managing this company -- this country, what our military mission will be. the last communication we had on libya from our president was that this was a humanitarian mission. it is clearly different today. >> it goes back to the original question about whether you get involved without congressional approval. given what was taking place there, and what unfolded, what approach would you have taken? >> the first choice i hope the president took was to pick up the phone or go through diplomatic channels to get in touch with gaddafi and say, "if you attack your people, we are going to bomb the heck out of you. you ought to recognize we are going to protect those people, and you better back off." i hope that happened.
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that is the teddy roosevelt approach. >> kenya signal intent with a dictator? >> gaddafi said all these positive things about president obama. i hope they spoke. i think that should have caused gaddafi to pull back. that is what i would have done. the second choice is a humanitarian mission. the third is to change the regime. that is where we ended up, and it is not what he told the american people. >> the next question is from benjamin from hanover. >> president george w. bush used a federal program, no child left behind, in an effort to improve the quality of our education system. other republicans believe the states should be left to reform their educational systems without federal mandates, be they funded or unfunded. what is your strategy for improving public education, and
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what is your rationale for that? >> my strategy was really shown in my of leadership in massachusetts. this was not just me. it was prior governors and prior legislators in massachusetts. we said we are going to test our kids every year, just like no trouble left behind directed, and we are going to have high standards. we are not going to let kids graduate from high school unless they have passed a graduation exam. that was put to the test for the first time. would we actually insist on passing the exam? i said yes. it was a bit of a battle. those high standards, testing our kids, allowing the state to take over a school that failed on a multiple year basis, and expanding choice -- we have charter schools doing very well. those choices have driven massachusetts schools to be number one in the nation. i think school choices and
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improvement of education happens best at the state level, not the federal level. my view is to encourage states to experiment, to learn from one another. ec states like florida -- jeb bush, -- jeb bush put in some really innovative ideas. it has driven florida, just like massachusetts, to be among the highest performing states in the nation. >> we have less than three minutes. i want to paraphrase. consensus building -- how can we get along? what should the president do, what would you do, to build a common theme? >> i have a great advantage. i know it did not feel like it at the time, but getting elected governor of massachusetts, i had a legislature that was slightly democrat. it was 87% democrat. to get anything done, i had to get along.
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i met every monday afternoon with the senate president and with the speaker of the house and with a couple of other leaders in each party, and we talked about the challenges the state faces. we established a relationship of trust and respect. that allowed us to work together. we often disagreed. i vetoed 800 or more measures. the disagreement is pretty clear. we also found places for common ground. if you respect people across the aisle and recognize that republicans, democrats, and independents love america, but have a different view of how to express that love, we can find common ground if you have leaders that are willing to put behind any idea of reelection and focus on the job they were elected to do, which is how the american people. we have too many politicians and too few statesmen. that is something i hope to bring to the white house. >> time did fly.
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a reminder this series will continue throughout the summer. while we are signing off, i want to keep this conversation going on line. you'll find another full 30 minutes of questions from our audience. you will be able to be watched this half-hour or catch a conversation with another candidate who has already appeared. a big thanks to mitt romney. thank you. [applause] >> our political coverage continues with the discussion on how democratic activists feel toward president obama and the debt reduction talks. this is about 45 minutes. dot org you thofrment also the vice
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president of the center for american progress. appreciate your time. let me share with you this headline from the washingn examiner. the president's prospects with regard to re-election. is this moment and maybe this week a make or break moment for the president? caller: i think so. heading into a deadline of august second and the deal has got to happen this week in order for the nations economic rate togeer survive. i think the bond agencies have h said you have to have long-term repercussions so it's important they get that deal this week and you have to strike that grand bargain. that's where president obama said you have to go over the long-term. in order to have sca debt reduction you have to have taxes particularly on the wealthy. paying an among the lowest they have. and order to sustain some of the programs you want.
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social medicare through the system and you have to have revenue base to do that. the grant bargain is a good s sign. host: but tea party activities and parties say there's no way. guest: that's how they got elected right. all the tea party people had to stand against spending s and sa they weren't going to raise taxes where it provides very little room to compromise and it's a concern to have them at the table in negotiations because they want to act as if there's no repercussions on the principled positions if we were to go down that root the nation's economy would slide in a deeper recession. we have to cut social medicare and continue to have low taxes on the wealthy and corporations.
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it's just a vision for america that i think is unjust. fundamentally unjust in which your asking the working class the middle class of america to bear the burden of all the pain and asking the wealth yes to do none of it and that's the concern we have. host: 20% to social security and 20% to medicaid and medire. almost half you have to have five or six interest on the debt if there's a grand bargain. should changes to the medicare, medicaid program be included and maybe changes to social security and when the retirement age kicks? guest: yes. partularly to means that mean use ask those that are wealthiest to receive less of a benefit as they retire. and also they would contribute a little bit more. as they are paying into the program and i think that those are very responsible ways to go
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about it. the concerns would be raising the eligibility age. your asking people to work longer in a tougher environment and giving a lower benefit to lower income seniors and it's going to force the elderly people that have given money into the program to i think to renege on the promise. i think raising the eligibility age is an area we don't want to go. there's reforms including means testing and chaing some of the tax structure around it that would be fair in this environment. ho host but if it's phased in 20 or 30-year would that be reasonable? guest: yeah if people have the expectation that they know what they're paying into at the time you get into a fairer environment, right? but the harder question, do you tell people in their middle ages
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40-50 you've been paying in with expectations to require you retiring at a certain age that so sorry. all bets are off. you don't get the benefit because we're not tough enough to tell a few wealthy individuals or othe to pay more. i think if we go down that road where we're changing entitlement reform we have to do it fairly across the board. it can't be put all the pain on social security and medicare and never ask the wealthy corporations and individuals making over $250,000 to up the antea ltle bit on their end. host: the president speaking to you and the news conference that the pain must be spread across the board. here's more. >> this is tough on the democratic sign and side too. i would be willing to see happen.
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there's some democrats that think th's absolutely unacceptable and that's where i have a selling is trying to sell some of our part if you're a progressive you should be concerned about debt and deficit just as much as you're a conservative. the reason is, if the only thing we're talking about over the next year or two years or five years is debt and deficit, then it's very hard to start talking about how to make investments in community colleges so our kid as trained and how to actually rebuild 2,000,000 of crumbling infrastructure. if you care about making investments in our kids in making investments in infrastructure and basic research then you should want our fiscal house in order. so that every time we propose a new initiative. somebody doesn't throw up the hands and say, ah, more big
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spending. more government. host: yet this response. the way obama explains it is he sticks this debt on the american people and says now we must pay it ba. how with no jobs. unemployment at 9 point 2% nation wide? guest: if you're looking at the current economic state it's struggling. we're still at over 9%. only 18,000 created last month. in ts environment we need investment i america. we need to build infrastructure and create jobs and preserve some important programs for people falling through the crack so i think that we haveo have a vision for america that has some justice involved in it. i think the struggle for the president is he's dealing with some party who is are completely in fleble and uncompromising but in addition know that, have
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a vision for a different kind of america. it's a competi visions of government and one, which we protect everyone and raise all votes and we have what i would deem a group on society asking everyone to contribute to a little collective and everyone derives collective benefit and you increase your standard of well-being and happiness. that's the society we want to live in. not one that's got theirs and mine and i don't care what you will get. those for competing visions that obama has had to fight for. you look at where you got to this point where the president should be credited or to blame for the significant part. increasing higher under him. it's worth going back to figure out he and how he nother. when the house republicans
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wanted what was the first thing they did. they demanded we find a compromise in the bush tax cut. president obama agreed at that time. december of 2010 agreed to an extension or the very wealthy which costs us about 35 billion over the next two-years so expid now in 2010. that's forhe very wealthy. in order to pay for that. nobodyaid for that at the time. house republicans coming into office. nobody demanded a sacrifice so. then we go along and get into april of 2010. what happens then? we're trying to fund the government and the house republicans warn we're going to shut down the entire thing. eventually obama agrees in april of 2010 and agrees to/38 billion in spending. about the same amount we gave to the wealthy in this country and we're slashing
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it for bas program at that point in time and now you flash forward from that point and here we are again going through the same conversation of whether or not we'll let the economy spiral in if we don't give the republicans everything they want if you look at the long-term. the president has been consistent in demanding fair sacrifice and having revenues on the tail and republicans have been clear about their priorities. demand a pain and sacrifices from the lower middle income folks. host: more information logging on to distinct progress dot org. also with the center for american progress. the committee to preserve out with t latest political spot aimed at that issue. let's look.
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today's seniors understand the benefits of social and medicare. they know these programs will be just as important for future generations so high is washington talking about benefit cut? stand with us and tell congress, don't cut social security and medicare. because we pay into these programs with every paycheck and americans of all ages need the security. need the benefits they provide. host: seeing a lot on both sides of the issue. guest: i'm helpful and supportive of their efforts and think that's the right approach. not that you want to appose any change in social security or medicare because you want the economy or the nation to sink into a deeper recession is how the republicans frame it. you want to preserve those benefits because they're a key central part of why america is a stable and emerging successful
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economy. in order to have an a flourishing workforce you have to have a safety netor people in their elderly ages to keep them out of poverty and that's one of the reasons the we have medicare to keep them out of desperateication and it's impoant to rember the vision of why we're protecting the important programs. .
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i think there is not the same kind of concern that there is about degrees. -- about greece. they are facing draconian cuts imposed on an entire society. and they basically have to do it because they have no other option. i think we have other options and we can do this in a way that is fair. balance the budget by 2030, that involves closing a bunch of loopholes. we give money to the hedge fund managers in the big oil compies. we are literally subsidizing them for these privileges. give money to the tax code.
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if you go that direction, we can balance the budget. host: one of our regular tweeters had this to say. let us go to the republican line, lake forest, illinois. caller: something was stated that is not quite accurate. most republicans realize that it has to be an even keel approach.
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most republicans are silenced by a big minority -- it does not explain escaut he simply as it should be explained. as far as the debt limit, i would like bh of you gentlen to lethe entire country know, -- i am sick of this nonsense. we finally have a president that wants to act like an adult. and how many times did these guys vote to raise the debt ceiling?
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this is political posturing to the detriment of this country. we need adults. i will not be associated with this childish nonsense and political posturing. john boehner is trying to be an adult. the most ironic thing is -- this situation should not have gone this far. host: thanks for the call.
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the giese section of the washington post -- "g" section of the washington post is this editorial. guest: 75% of republicans favor obama's approach. most republicans support this approach. some are very reasonable than that. there are increases in the debt limit. we noted that the current leadership voted to raise the --
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the fact that we are talking about this novel reproached -- [unintelligible] this is something that we normally do. the fact that we are in this situation where we will not raise it, because we need spending cuts is totally different, becauseongress recognizes that the debt limit is paying the obligion. congress has passed bills where we have allocated money. now you have to pay the bill. host: we wer looking into has
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contributed to it other than the president. can you ask your guest but he thinks about an initiative like one company? guest: they organized a somewhere around 200,000 followers, people demanding that the obama administration not cave on medicare and a social security and not of these followers have lots of money and manpower supporting the campaign one time around. they will not contribute their effort, time, it money. i believe the posture is
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probably helpful to the president. he is getting serious push back from the left. we have to move in that direction. he is getting serious heat, not just for political purposes but others behind it. we have to keep people of of poverty. host: wou you ban any contributions for you personally if he goes to medicare or social security? guest: if we do not have any tax raises and it depends of what kinds of change we are talking about. i think we can find an approach
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that is aggressive in nature, but i would have to look at the details he would be proposing. host: i find it curious that wealthy liberals find ways to pay for problems created by ever government. guest: it is a fact that corporate income -- the united states, the second to the west in the world at collecting the percentage. corporations are avoiding taxes
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altogether in a variety of different ways. some are receiving -- getting money back from the government. that is for the privilege of doing business in the united states of america. they are laying off thousands of people. they are demanding and asking for a huge taxpayer subsidies for them, but not paying any taxes. most people join country clubs, and gems, and others feel they are proud to pay their monthly dues, because they want to be part of that special relationship or community where they receive benefits. people should feel the same kind of honor and respect to live in a wonderful and free society to
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appease the benefits that we do, we have to be willing to invest in it. we should not have an aversion to paying some amount of taxes. host: democrats line. caller: i am on my disability. that is also have to live off of. presidentutthe tax thes payouts and rich? guest: that is what i was saying. we are heading into a difficult time.
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we should not cut her benefits and not as corporations to pay a little bit more. it is not the type of just society that i want to live in and that most americans want to live in. we have to be fair. it has to start with people that do not get a free ride. host: next caller. caller: i agree with our guest. i am a veteran. we pay our current active members about $30,000 a year. we ask them to protect this country. yet we have people who are sheltering their money, 18,000 corporations in the cayman islands alone, masses amount of
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money that people have and they do not want to contribute to keeping this country free and the infrastructure that made them rich here. they want us to default on the debt in the crime rate would go through the sky, like it did in 2008 when everything hit the fan. i cannot see them alone that. that is not american to me. guest: that reminds me of news corp.. they are a delaware based company. it is famous for the fact that it has the most offshore tax havens of of global companies. they do not want to pay their
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fair share to be a participant in america's economy. they have offshore havens in the grand caymans or wherever. if we do not raise the debt limit over the next month, we will receive $172 billion option income and revenue. we will have to pay out $300 billion in obligations such as social security, veterans' benefits. how are we going to do that? that is why you have to raise the debt limit.
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many a on the chopping block. the government will have to make decisions on who is going to get the money, and who is not. host: some republicans have called those claims scare tactics. guest: numbers are numbers. the debt limit runs out on august 2. on august 3, many experts have said that we will hover obligations that we will not be able to meet on that day if we do not raise the debt ceiling. host: here is one quotation from
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this publication. should congress have the ability or does the debt limit belong in the hands congress? guest: they have showed themselves and that of managing anything over the past decade or so. i thi it poor management by congress. they do not know how to dump our tion's perris.
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not making critical investment in infrastructure, education, green energy, a variety of areas. it is mostly congress to blame. they need a coherent into a strategic approach. very few people willing to reach above and their principals in this say, but find a comprise can't do what is right. host: from our torture page, two weeks from now, hang on. -- twitter page, two weeks from now, hangn.
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and here is another statement. guest: it would be a cheaper approach if we have people on a single payer model. there is more efficiency in it. we would not be paying overhead while jacking up rates on people or cutting people out and then having them file and to difficult situations where it is possible for taxpayers to foot the bill. at is a model for the rest of the world. if i had my way, we will be looking at trying to move the eligibility age down from medicare, giving people the option to buy into it at a younger age.
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host: senator mitch mcconnell brought it up on the floor. here he is thursday. >> republicans will not be reduced to being the tax collectors for the obama economy. we will not call a bad deal a good deal. if the president wants to threaten seniors or rattle the world by attending that we cannot pay our bills, he can do that. he will not implicate republicans in these efforts. as a last result -- resort, i have a proposal. if the president would rather default than cut back, let him explain that. if he wants to preserve his
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vision of washington, let him explain that. if he wants to spend us into oblivion, he can do that. do not expect any more cover from republicans on it then you got on health care. none. host: your response? guest: republicans a implicated in all of this. it started under the bush administration. we are in a situationith the debt spiralling of control. we had to bail out an economy that was about to collapse in 2008. under who's watched did that occur?
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under whose watch did we have wars in afghanistan that we started? under his watch, the economy faltered that we had to rescue it from going off of a cliff. republicans are equally responsible if not more responsible than democrats for th situation we are in now. host: when the democrats had control, why didn't they raise taxes? guest: i agreed that raising taxes on people making over $250,000 was a good idea. obamantroduced a budget that called for that. by the end of 200010, -- 2010,
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the tax cuts were going to expire. there was a situation where the economy could get even worse. we will not extend a tax cuts for the middle class. if you do that, extend it for the rich. -- and he said, i will sacrifice to reach a compromise. he has shown that willingness many times over. host: republican line, for lauderdale florida. caller: i am very fearful of
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something going on with the politics of the united states into the discussion going on now. i see the democratic party developing what i call. you elt me, and i will get other people's money and take care of your problems. when i look to the health care bill, one day, there is going to be an election and the democrats want to do something that makes no economic sense and will win it anyways. they have so many clients voters and by some miracle, they
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will give it to him, even if it takes the countryown. guest: i take strong objection to that. the caller is talking about programs that people pay for. money has come out of their paycheck from social security into medicare and they are investing in those programs. people are happy with the benefits they receive with those programs. it is not a free handout. they are earning it. i laugh at this issue, because its largely the state of the gop these days. the wealthiest of people, huge wall street tycoons are giving the party a lot of money to
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ght for them. the gop has been willing to say at every turn, we will continue to fight for benefits for the top wealthiest, the top 1%. it boggles my mind why they will not ask for a little but a fair sacrifice. it is because they receive enormo benefits for their party from the donations that they have gotten. host: this is a story in "the new york times". the total federal debt, take a different types of debt, has increased. while the debt has exploded, the economy has remained stagnant. guest: you cannot do spending cuts a lot.
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we are in a very troubled economic environment. harsh budget cuts will face a situation that will turn into worse for ordinary working people. many states and localities are laying off their police forces, having to close down schools or cut people of of schools. that is a situation that will get worse if they cannot receive their share of medicaid spending or student assistance programs. it will occur if they do not make investments into infrastructure, education. we cannot be in a situation where this happens when our economy is faltering.
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host: andrew, port st. lucie, florida. caller: the guest is right in what he is saying. we wear at ground zero. i have posttraumatic stress disorder. i have a lot of injuries i got down there from falling down. i need my medicare. i need my social security. i need all of the benefits that are coming to me. i worked 35 long years of my life for those benefits.
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they send all of the jobs out of the country. now they are trying to create all different types of jobs. as far as the republican party, they are not american. gues i thank the gentleman for his hard work on 9/11. he did the ultimate sacrifice, to go into a situation where your life is on the line to save and rescue other people. we should be asking everyone to participate where he made in dividual sacrifice for a collective benefit. the caller is right.
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we as a nation should find a way to maintain programs that are highly accessible and efficient the the. and efficient, where people have contributed money and should receive. host: here isneomment. guest: it is really important to try to change the mentality. the modern conservative movement has tried to estabsh a mentality in which taxes are the
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enemy. we cannot and should not pay. you see modern republicans say corporations can pay zero in taxes. they can say that without getting a laugh from the audience. taxes are part of being an american. a patriotic thing. contributing part of what you run to receive benefits is part of being a citizen in this country. host: marcus joins us from the bronx in new york. caller: republicans do not want a good [unintelligible] just look at it before the 2010 elections.
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as soon as the republicans are in power, everything goes backwards. the only way president obama can get is in -- the unemployment rate is 9.1%. est: mitch mcconnell said outlay that his most important job is to make sure obama is not reelected. sometimes there is a fair-minded approach. there are certain times that call for doing ethane that is important to get done for this nation to move forward.
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you have to tear it for the economy teeth -- you have to do it for the economy to get stronger. to rise above their interest and do the things that need to get done. two only focus on getting rid of obama is the wrong focus. it is a very selfish-minded approach to politics. to think that as long as people suffer so i will benefit from it politically -- it is wrong. host: $14.30 trillion debt. now it is quickly aroaching
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$15 trillion. >> an update on the debt and deficit reduction talks. this is from today's "washington journal." consumer. alex is joining us live on the phone. thanks for being with us. guest: thanks for having me. host: 36 hour deadline by friday from the president came and went although we're told over the weekend. staff level negotiations have continued. what's the later? guest: well, the late zest the highest level talks between the president and the congressional leaders has simmered down.
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that's everythinged by the fact that the senate republican leader is in kentucky this weekend. the focus is really right now between president obama and the house gop leaders. that's the main impasse in the negotiations and there was no progress to report yesterday. some democratic aids on friday predicted that there might be a meeting schedule today but there's been no meeting announced yet. so it seems that highest level talks between obama and the congressional leaders and republicans in the house and senate have pretty much wound down and now the focus i think is in the senate moving the mitch mcconnell contingency plan and in the house, the focus is moving what consumers are rallying around the cup, cap and
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balance plan. >> that's the latest that includes be bait over a balanced budget amendment. who's behind this proposal and what is it calling for? guest: well this proposal has been pushed by conservatives in the house and senate by an array of conservative grass roots groups or grass types groups depending on your opinion of them. the conservative groups have pushed this cut, cap and balance bill very aggressively. there's a large coalition that have been urging lawmakers in the house and senate to sign a pledge promise together impose any increase unless this cut, cap and balance bill is passed. what it would do is cut about 111,000,000 in bending in fiscal
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year 2012 and impose and a cap on federal spending capping spending at 18 percent of gross domestic product by 2021 and require the passage of a balanced budget amendment before the debt ceiling is raised. if that's met it would raise it by 2.4 trillion dollars. consumers think this is their great opportunity to pass this but it seems very unlikely to pass in the senate. >> so walk us through what will happen this week? the house could vote on this as early as tuesday and also senator mitch mcconnell putting pressure on harry reid as well. guest: yeah. well, i think the word now is that there would be a vote on
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tuesday on the cut, cap and balance bill. and then the fight would move to the senate. mitch mcconnell is moving for both the cut on the cut cap and balance bill and the amendment and that's something he's negotiated with harry reid right now. it's tough to get two major things done in a single week but giving the looming august second and the conservatives want on both issues maybe they'll be able to game or jam that in. may want to first vote on the cut cap and balance pledge they feel will give the amendment more momentum but tough because you need 2/3 support of both chambers so in the senate you need 20 democrats. host: lots of focus on moodies
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and the credit rating of the u.s. economies and treasuries. could see action wall street if congress doesn't act on all of this. how much pressure is that putting on members of congress? host: well, the notable development last week is you had a coalition as major business groups, groups that have been long-time allies of the republican party. u.s. chamber. business roundtable. financial services round table and national services of manufacturers they sent a letter to members of congress last week urging them to put politic as side and get a deal done and that's put pressure on republicans. some of the conservatives in the house have made the argument that a default would not be such a catastrophe. some senate conservatives made
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that argument too that this deal does not need to get done by august second and the federal government can rearrange spending priorities to continue paying bondholders but the business community was clear that was not an acceptable option and the business community came out with that letter tuesday morning and tuesday afternoon. mitch mcconnell held a press-conference and rolled out the contingency fall plan and said i'm not going to allow a default to happen so there's certainly been pressure from the business community having an effect on republicans. >> so when you see the outlook station. what happens to the nation if there's no debt deal. america by default you're saying default is not going to happen? guest: well, mitch mcconnell said he will not allow default to happen but i mean, way congress works is one person doesn't have a complete say.
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i think it's expected to see a number of tea parties and may see some of that happen in the senate to. expectations is you'll have democrats making from the lot of lost votes but whether or not that'll happen you can't say for sure. given mcconnell's strong statement last week the republican would co-own a bad economy. i think that's a pretty reassuring indication that republican leaders will not allowed the default to happen on >> july 21 will mark the one- year anniversary of the dodd- frank act.
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barney frank entered questions about congressional funding for the bill. here it is a portion. >> dozens of deadlines have been missed. >> not all of them would have been done in time. as long as they are working on them all, i am ok with them taking them their time. $200 million about within the context of the wars in iraq.
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by the way, when people worry about why we wanted it not to be subject to the appropriations process, we would have been much further along. democrats -- i think you should not hold off on it. i got to see some analysis in infrastructure in afghanistan and some of the other things that they are for. i think it is a reasonable thing to do. as long as the cost includes, of course, the financial crisis and the terrible lost revenue and jobs and turmoil. that is the cost. the cost is the terrible crisis that we had. about how much money we made
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over the intervention, the combination of the tarp and the federal reserve rate it is about $100 -- it is about $100 billion for the american government. >> there has been some criticism for not writing more clarity -- i wanted to get your view on that. just as a related question, you talked about the belts being over. -- bailouts been over are we really to believe there would not be bailed out? >> i will not comment on any specific financial institution. you get to be chairman and you get more influence, but you have
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to shut up. my first couple of weeks, i talk like a normal person and here i am affecting the markets. i do not want to talk about citigroup. if you mean the kind of intervention that kept aig going, no. the law is very clear. if any large financial institution, whose demise would have broader consequences, that is windy death -- that is when the death penalty come into place. -- death panels come into place. they might have to play -- paid
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back the last two years of salary. then will vote -- and the question will be, if that institution can be none of its debts, would that have a facts that would reverberate throughout the economy in a negative way? if so, the institution is empowered to pick and choose and pay as little as is necessary to avoid further damage. it is a model backed -- that the fdic has been falling for a long time. heidi predicted, and this was the case, that he -- high and he predicted, and this was the case, that he had a choice, he either paid all the debts or none of the debt. he said, both for bad situations. yes, there is an ability on the part of the financial
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institutions to make some payment of some of the dead. -- debt. every penny must be recovered. any federal official, unless there is a change in the statute, who would advance money to keep one of those institutions going would be committing a federal crime. the federal reserve have the power to do what they did with aig. gone. the fed is now going to be able to set up a facility for institutions that are solvent, but the liquid -- ill-equipped -- illiquid. it has to be a facility that is available to a whole range of institutions.
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that is a disadvantage for us. the public has to be willing to pay. there will not be any effort to keep a failed institution alive. >> you can watch all of his remarks online anytime at c- more on the dodd-frank one-year anniversary with live coverage monday when the financial stability oversight council hold a public meeting looking at the bill. you will hear remarks from tim geithner and federal reserve chairman ben bernanke. watch live coverage monday at 11:00 on c-span2. >> you are watching c-span, bringing new politics and public affairs. every morning, it is "washington journal." journal."

American Politics
CSPAN July 17, 2011 9:30pm-11:00pm EDT

News/Business. The day's top public-policy events.

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